Beta Boom Blog

About startups, funding, rising tech scenes, diversity and tech.

Desiree Vargas Wrigley to future CEOs: “Often you're the one who’s holding yourself back”

Desiree Vargas Wrigley to future CEOs: “Often you’re the one who’s holding yourself back”

After exiting the first company she founded, Desiree Vargas Wrigley—no relation to Chicago’s famous Wrigleys—found herself a stay-at-home-mom for the first time, caring for her
Ashlee Ammons of Mixtroz on conquering the fear of starting over

Ashlee Ammons of Mixtroz on conquering the fear of starting over

In 2014, Ashlee Ammons was living a comfortable life in New York City, producing celebrity driven events and working in brand marketing. She’s close with
Meena Palaniappan

Facebook for disasters: meet Meena Palaniappan’s Atma Connect app

Somewhere between the desire to help disaster-prone communities navigate preparedness to revolutionizing the way marginalized people use social media, Meena Palaniappan gave rise to an
Women's Startup Academy 2020

Women’s Startup Academy 2020

We are excited to announce that Beta Boom has teamed up with Womenpreneurs to run a startup academy for women that will take place from
amanda doamaral headshot

Amanda DoAmaral closes a $615K seed round—and opens up about her roller coaster year as a founder

Amanda DoAmaral is the founder and CEO of Fiveable, an edtech livestream platform with a growing user base of teachers and students from every state
A Look Back at our SOCAP Diversity & Impact Gathering

A Look Back at our SOCAP Diversity & Impact Gathering

As we enter the winter season approaching the end of the year, we wanted to reflect on one of the highlights of the previous season.
Founder Spotlight: Cindy Mi of VIPKid

Founder Spotlight: Cindy Mi of VIPKid

Here in the US, the fable of the dropout-turned-tech-billionaire is a familiar one. But it doesn’t usually bring to mind a young Chinese woman reinventing
New Pattern Spotlight: Amanda DoAmaral, Founder of Fiveable

New Pattern Spotlight: Amanda DoAmaral, Founder of Fiveable

Amanda started out as a Teach for America teacher in Skyline High School in Oakland, where she taught Advanced Placement U.S. and World History. After
Treat Your Startup's Fundraise Like Sales - Startup Basics Podcast

Treat Your Startup’s Fundraise Like Sales – Startup Basics Podcast

When you are raising capital for your startup, you have to sell your investors on your business. By treating your fundraise as a sales cycle,
New Pattern Spotlight: Jude Chiy, Founder of Flamingo

New Pattern Spotlight: Jude Chiy, Founder of Flamingo

In this first episode of the New Pattern Spotlight series, Kimmy speaks with Jude Chiy, the founder and CEO of Flamingo, which lets property managers
Introducing the New Pattern Spotlight Video Series

Introducing the New Pattern Spotlight Video Series

After speaking with countless founders throughout the U.S. from underrepresented groups, we kept hearing a common lament, "I never see founders like me in tech
3 Must-Know Tips for Getting Your First Sales

3 Must-Know Tips for Getting Your First Sales

Many inexperienced startup founders expect sales to come flooding in as soon as they launch their product and marketing campaign. In reality, that rarely happens
How to Get Your Initial Sales and Set Your Startup on a Path to Success - Startup Basics Podcast

How to Get Your Initial Sales and Set Your Startup on a Path to Success – Startup Basics Podcast

Many founders quit their startup dreams when they fail to get their first handful of sales after launching their product. Don't be one of them!
Diversity as a Driver For Innovation

Diversity as a Driver For Innovation

Yes, it actually does matter Photo by Alex Holyoake on Unsplash It’s 2019 and people still treat diversity building in their organization as a checking-the-box
Validating your tech product without building tech - Startup Basics Podcast

Validating your tech product without building tech – Startup Basics Podcast

Innovators are visionaries, but that can sometimes lead them to jump in head first into building or designing a product that isn't quite right and
A/B Testing image

The first thing you should do when launching your product

Like many of the topics I cover in my Startup Basics podcast, this article is based on a mistake I've made repeatedly: not ensuring that
3 features that will help your startup succeed - Startup Basics Podcast

3 features that will help your startup succeed – Startup Basics Podcast

What do Gmail and Slack have in common beyond being among the most loved and used apps in the world? Both were created with a
It’s Time for Tech to Step Up

It’s Time for Tech to Step Up

There are many sad truths about the state of tech today:
  • It is still an industry that is not inclusive to minorities and women (with
Feature creep

3 key features that will help your startup succeed

What do Gmail and Slack have in common beyond being among the most loved and used apps in the world? Both were created with a
How to find an idea for your next startup

How to find an idea for your next startup

People say that ideas are a dime a dozen in startup land, but many aspiring tech entrepreneurs struggle with finding a worthy one to pursue.
Product Market Fit

What is product-market fit?

If you are new to startups, you will surely come across the term "product-market fit" at some point. It's a very useful concept for describing
Focus, focus, focus to make your startup successful - Startup Basics Podcast

Focus, focus, focus to make your startup successful – Startup Basics Podcast

Running a startup is a race against time, so it's important to keep focused on those things that will help your startup succeed. At the
These Guys Got It Going On

Get out there! Grow your startup with event marketing

As I wrote before, the best thing that the founders of an early-stage startup can do is talk to people. Speaking to potential customers in
Pyramid Security founder Halston van der Sluys being interviewed by a local news station

Getting your startup covered by the media

You don't need a multi-million dollar marketing budget to get your startup covered in media, and doing so can be rocket fuel for your growth.
Mad Men - Queens and Kings of Advertising

Must-know tactics for paid advertising for your startup

Resource-constrained early-stage startups often default to content marketing since it is essentially free. However, there are instances when paying for customers makes a ton of
Growing your startup with a podcast - Startup Basics Podcast

Growing your startup with a podcast – Startup Basics Podcast

We are in a golden age of podcasting at the moment as evidenced by Spotify's recent acquisition of podcast producers Parcast and Gimlet Media and
Missouri Start Quilting Co

Write, write, write to grow your startup

In the first article in this series, I discussed how to create a marketing strategy for promoting your startup as well as how marketing activities
Apple iPod ad via https://ondigitalmarketing.com/learn/odm/foundations/5-factors-that-influence-technology-adoption-rates/ipod-advertising1/

Marketing your startup? Here are the steps to take first

"Social media marketing" is not a sufficient marketing strategy for your startup. Yet this is the default answer that far too many founders of early-stage
Podcast: How to solve your startup's Catch-22 conundrum - Startup Basics Podcast

Podcast: How to solve your startup’s Catch-22 conundrum – Startup Basics Podcast

A very common conundrum for startup founders–particularly non-technical ones–is: “How do I get investment, when investors want to see a product and traction, but I
How to find a great co-founder for your startup

How to find a great co-founder for your startup

Although it's possible to build a successful tech company as a lone founder, there are many advantages to joining up with someone as committed as
The importance of depth in a tech startup ecosystem

The importance of depth in a tech startup ecosystem

Kauffman Foundation, SURGE, Blink, Global Entrepreneurship Network (Startup Genome), among others all offer individual rankings for the entrepreneurial ecosystems across various regions. Each includes a
The secret formula to growing your startup: 1-10-100

The secret formula to growing your startup: 1-10-100

All startup founders dream of the following scenario: You press the big red "launch" button. Your app (or whatever) goes live. The user counter is
Specialist-founders

Why the next tech boom will be led by a different type of founder

The next tech boom will be led by outlier experts–not hackers or business types–who have a master-level knowledge of their customers and problem space but
Beating the Stage Boss

Launching a startup? Here’s what you can expect

Having worked with a number of founders on the earliest stages of their startups, I have seen quite a few promising folks drop out prematurely.
Guerrilla usability testing

Want your startup to thrive? Listen to your customers

The number one reason why startups fail, according to CB Insights, is that they never find a market need for their product. The sixth most
Bootstrapping. What is it, and is it right for you?

Bootstrapping. What is it, and is it right for you?

There is a growing movement to "bootstrap" startups, and that can be a wonderful path. However, there are a number of factors that make some
What kind of startup are you and why it matters

What kind of startup are you and why it matters

Many innovators and entrepreneurs find that theories, frameworks, and advice such as Lean Startup fall short of their promise. Why? It's very simple: there is
Have a startup idea? Here are the first things you should do

Have a startup idea? Here are the first things you should do

People say that ideas are a dime a dozen, but many entrepreneurs–even experienced ones–struggle to come up with promising product ideas. The fact that you
Founders building partnerships

Founders building partnerships

A solid foundation:No lasting partnership can't be built based on deception or untruths. Gauge early talks for transparency and honesty. Without these, there is no
Can I get funding for my startup with just an idea?

Can I get funding for my startup with just an idea?

It’s quite common that I meet founders that are seeking capital for their startup idea. I love talking to these founders, but I inevitably tell
Know thy competition

Want your startup to succeed? Know thy competition

Too often startups tell me that they have no competition. I write those startups off right away because I can guarantee that not only do
Getting Customers for Your Startup

Getting Customers for Your Startup

It doesn’t matter if you built the greatest product on earth if you can’t find an effective distribution strategy to acquire customers. In this episode
Grow Your Startup with the 1-10-100 Rule - Startup Basics

Grow Your Startup with the 1-10-100 Rule – Startup Basics

Popular tech media would make it seem otherwise, but it's quite rare for a startup to release a product and see users or customers rushing
Do I Need a Co-Founder - Startup Basics

Do I Need a Co-Founder – Startup Basics

The media loves celebrity founders such as Steve Jobs, Elon Musk, and Jeff Bezos portraying them as one-man shows. However, most successful founders have at
Nashville Startup Hub

Building World-Class Startup Ecosystems by Focusing on Needs

As the managing partner at Beta Boom, a high-touch seed fund that focuses on emerging tech hubs, I have had the great fortune to speak
Leaky Tech Bucket and Pipeline

The Leaky Bucket and the Tech Pipeline Issue

The leaky tech pipeline issue has been well documented and largely acknowledged by the industry. As various companies struggle with how to attract more women
WishYourPrice -- Name Your Price on Any Online Retail Item

WishYourPrice Is Inventing a World Where Everyone Has a Say on Prices

Imagine if you could decide how much you pay for everything you buy. Those shoppers that are willing to pay more for an item--either because
No Plug, No Cord, No Charging Pad: How WiWaves is Revolutionizing Wireless Charging

No Plug, No Cord, No Charging Pad: How WiWaves is Revolutionizing Wireless Charging

Imagine having your phone charge while it’s sitting in your pocket or while you hold it in your hand, untethered from the wall. Imagine not

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